The way your Local Authority communicates with its residents is critical to improving their experiences and perceptions. How will agile workspace technology enable your Local Authority to deliver better connected resident services?
December’s General Election saw politicians from across the political spectrum making claims and counter-claims about the resources available to Local Authorities in the UK. Rhetoric aside, the average Local Authority is stretched in 2020 – the Institute for Fiscal Studies reported that councils in England have seen an average real-terms cut of almost 26% to their funding since 2009–10. Unfortunately, reductions in funding have not been matched by reductions in demand. Local Authorities play a key role in enabling residents to do the things they need to do on a day-to-day basis, and their responsibilities have never been broader or more complex than they are today.
The introduction of transformational agile workspace technologies can help Local Authorities provide better services to their residents. In this blog post we’ll highlight how poor services impact resident experience, and explore how agile workspace technology can support better resident outcomes.
Local Authority Performance – Room for Improvement
All organisations can make changes to their people, processes and technologies that support better outcomes for their end users. This is especially true for Local Authorities, where the primary focus is to support residents. As a recent study by cloud-based communications provider 8×8 found, the average Local Authority has significant room for improvement when it comes to its communication with residents:
- One in three UK residents struggle to get vital information from their Local Authority’s customer service team.
- 71% of residents said they expected customer service levels from their Local Authority to improve in-line with council tax rises.
The root causes of these issues are clear:
- 43% of callers get passed between multiple service agents.
- 21% of callers report three or more hand-offs.
- 48% of 16-34 year olds report multiple hand-offs.
As for the resulting impact on the quality of service delivery, it speaks for itself:
- 33% of respondents missed bin collections
- 18% of respondents reported rubbish dumped on the street
- 17% of respondents missed rent payments
- 18% of respondents were forced to park illegally
- 12% of respondents held an event without permission
How can Local Authorities improve these services? After all, they play a key role in enabling residents to do the things they need to do. They can start by delivering better connected resident services.
How to Deliver Better Connected Resident Services
Agile workspace technology holds the key to facilitating residents’ digital journeys throughout their interactions with your Local Authority. It will also ease communication with related agencies, including local NHS trusts, emergency services and housing associations. Adopting cloud-based agile workspace tools and technologies will simplify the way you work with colleagues, partners and suppliers, reducing costs and ultimately making lives better for residents and communities.
Here are five steps your Local Authority can take to deliver better connected resident services:
- Step one: integrate your communications systems in the cloud. Consolidate voice, video, chat and contact centre in the cloud to enhance communications, simplify management and lower IT costs.
- Step two: engage citizens, staff and agency partners with web messaging. Real-time web messaging provides quick answers to residents’ queries and improves internal and cross-agency collaboration.
- Step three: support all communications channels used by citizens. Multi-channel citizen interactions drive first contact resolution and increase resident satisfaction ratings.
- Step four: use video and voice, from anywhere. Flexible working practices with video conferencing improves staff retention and helps achieve cost savings through office size reductions.
- Step five: use analytics to transform public services. Data-driven insights from analytics help spot trends, improve citizen outcomes and change public perceptions.
In spite of funding cuts, there is a clear desire and willingness from Local Authorities to improve resident interactions, collaborate with colleagues and partners, combine health and social care programmes and achieve efficiency and cost savings. By adopting a cloud-first agile workspace approach, your Local Authority will be able to maximise its IT budget and deliver better connected resident services.
Unlock the Agile Workspace
New forms of communication and collaboration technology have opened up a whole new world of possibilities when it comes to how Local Authorities empower their staff and engage with their residents.
Agile workspace tools are paving the way for more dynamic working practices for organisations of all sizes, delivering huge opportunities for Local Authorities to leverage a more connected workforce and deliver a joined up approach to resident services. To learn more about how your Local Authority can unlock the agile workspace, download your free Unlock the Agile Workspace whitepaper.